18 Jul 2011

French decolonistaion stance on Tahiti disappoints activists

11:28 am on 18 July 2011

French Polynesia's pro-independence Union For Democracy says it is disappointed but not surprised that the French president has again spoken out against the territory's reinscription on the UN decolonisation list.

While Paris has allowed New Caledonia to be re-enlisted, Nicolas Sarkozy has described the campaign by Oscar Temaru as curious, adding that he will protect the Polynesians against such talk.

The French high commissioner in Papeete, Richard Didier, says the French diplomatic network will do whatever it takes to resist the move and use international meetings to re-state the French position.

Tea Hirshon of the Union For Democracy says while the logic would dictate Pacific solidarity with Tahiti, many island states are silent because they are dependent on aid.

And she says she understands that others play diplomatic games.

"This is the first time that actually read that France has contacted Australia and New Zealand. It's a total colonialist attitude and very shocking in this time in the history of the world."

Tea Hirshon says New Zealand's position is full of contradictions as Wellington even organised self-determination referendums for Tokelau.